Altitudes & Starting Approaches
PG - I've been struggling to make my own tracks. A few tips would be nice. Do you start with a level plane?
Alpine - Most of my tracks come from re-edited existing landscapes. Alpine's Crazy and Alpine's Extremely Crazy are built from scratch. Snowy Caverns (mtm1) was my all-time greatest achievement. It was built from Random terrain. The best advice is to get a track with the textures you want, and just edit off of that road. I used to like the familiarity of having the C8 track in my old MTM1 tracks... I have at least three tracks for mtm1 that have the C8 course, with roads leading to and from it.
PG - Do you work by building upward or by digging downward?
Alpine - This would depend on the effect you want. Extremely Crazy is modeled after Alpine's Crazy, but Extremely Crazy appears built UPWARD from flatness, and Alpine's Crazy appears to be dug out from a high altitude. And why? Because that is how they were built, sort of. Alpine's Crazy was in fact already dug out for the most part. I just made the ramps and stuff to different altitude areas. If u think Extremely Crazy is cool, Alpine's Crazy should be a nice circuit as well.
PG - How do you/did you approach a track?
Alpine - Well lets see - there are only a few ways I do things :
1) Edit and use existing stuff
Take a track that you like the textures to use, and clone it. Then edit from that one, either making use of some of the existing roads or not. That's almost a trademark for me. Almost all my tracks that are cloned use some of the existing roads in the course. So all I do is pick a nice area of the track that's there and make it turn in a difference direction, and start laying roads randomly, maybe sometimes aiding a so-so transition with the altitude work. Look at Farmyard Escape for a perfect example, or E2 for that matter. I used Farmyard Escape for E2 (FarmYardEscape2) so now Farmyard goes in one direction from FR29, and E2 cuts off of the FarmyardEscape track, and heads back through the Farmroad29 track. (am I babbling? Sorry!)
2) Edit/Not using Existing
If you checked out Canyon Cliffs, you prolly won't see Sidewinder Canyon textures cuzz i took them all off but yep - I cloned Sidewinder, and found that along the edges of the terrain, there was noticeable cliff there. It was almost all done already, so I just threw on some darker textures to make the roads on the cliffs. Most of that work was already there, which is why Canyon Cliffs is the first Tracked2 track available. I did it basically to get something out that we could race... wasn't meant to be special... I needed to try my luck in Tracked2 so I did, and I figured I would release what came of it.
3) Random Terrain editing.
Throw up some random terrains and see if anything looks useful. U may want almost flat, or use lots of hills. Snowy Caverns started out as an ALL white random terrain and I built it from there, randomly selecting which way the course is going to go. Then when the roads are all laid in, touch up the altitude work, and go for testing/re-editing sessions.
Ok now you wonder - no laying out courses on paper and then making them?
Well roads on paper and roads with altitude are two different things. I tried using paper... But it doesn't work for me. Alpine's Crazy was a failed attempt at an idea I had. All my stuff usually takes shape in editing. Never planned anything. Some times I have an urge to create so I go at it, and sometimes I have a few ideas so I make a track to put them into... I think my most upsetting track was Damn Who Cares? That makes me spew! The idea was to get a rally/circuit style mix, where you have a few laps here and then go on to the rest of the track.
PG - My version of Junk Rally 2 says "preview" on the picture logo-thing. Is that the final version? Should I download your tracks from your page, or is someplace like KC's or Nicky's up to date too?
Alpine - All my tracks are always released and there are never any 'Fix' versions. I always hate when I mess something up but once I release it, I just leave it how it is. I could point out some real bad errors here and there on all my tracks. (Can't we all? Perfection is really hard in track editing!)
PG - Extremely Crazy is about the smoothest, nicest track I've found
Alpine - Thanks, I am awful proud of that one myself!
PG - I thought I had downloaded all your tracks (your work is great) but have just discovered your home page. It seems I have more to look into.
Alpine - Don't forget to get Alpine's Crazy. It is an MTM1 track but has MTM2 models. Lots of people got this MTM1 track for use in MTM2. That's how awesome the altitude work is on this!
PG - Well, thanks for your time and help.